For those who follow will have noticed how it’s been quite a year for the folks at Darker Than Wax.
Bubbling beneath the modest surface, they've managed to keep busy with a string of events which saw international veterans from the likes of Krystal Klear and Opolopo & Amalia for their Third Party series. Their recent collaboration with Midnight Shift and Zouk known as DMZ pushed their reach further into house and techno territories, seeing the likes of Basic Soul Unit and Iron Curtis on our shores. As of late, their releases have seen a refreshing influx of varied artistes such as Midnight Runners, Juno Akasawa, Evil Needle and Similar Objects as well as Nigel One.
Running the madness are Funk B*stard and Kaye – together, known as Cosa Nostra. As label owners, these artistically spirited tastemakers are influenced by, and often rein in a diverse selection in their catalogue, mixes and live/DJ sets.
As producers for Return to Sender, their love for house edge their fondness for jazz, soul, hiphop and boogie – bucking the beatmaking trend with an emergence of back-to-basics 4/4.
With a nostalgic embrace of the genre,“I second that emotion” unfolds in waves of warped vocals, warbling synths and all-round electronic warmth.
The catchy arrangement of melodious synth stabs and jacking Chicago styled bass lines proves to be the apparent main building blocks in “Spectre” and “By the way.
Part 2 flows seamlessly from its predecessor, with an exceptional remix by Nigel One thrown in, breathing in a new lease of life to the already infectious “Whole Lot More”, with layers of slinked out snares and disco claps.
The magnetic delivery of “You Know What I Mean” unabashedly re-emphasizes the release's core identity, and the duo’s strongest attributes.
Though slightly formulaic, it is also uncomplicated and relatable. With its versatility from headphones to dancefloor, this subtly sophisticated staple appeals and reconnects with its undeniable groove.
Cosa Nostra proves to be the jack of all trades and nothing short of a master when it comes to house music – a knack which is on full display in Return to Sender.
1. I Second that Emotion
3. By the Way
1. Whole Lot More
2. Whole Lot More (Nigel One Remix)
3. You Know What I Mean